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Vanderbilt Pathology Laboratory Services

Test Directory



BORDETELLA PERTUSSIS PCR (BPD)

Department: Molecular Infectious Disease
Test Synonym(s): BPD, Pertussis, Whooping cough, PCR for Bordetella pertussis
CPT Codes: 87798
Methodology: PCR (Polymerase Chain Reaction)
Reference Range: B. pertussis DNA not detected
Tube Type: 2 Dacron or polyester swabs on wire shaft
Specimen: Naso-pharynx source
Pediatric Requirements: Naso-pharynx source
Temperature: Refrigerated: 1 week; -80C: longer than 1 week
Stability: Refrigerated: 1 week; -80C: longer than 1 week
Reasons for Rejection: Cotton swabs or swabs on wood or plastic shafts; alternative specimen sent without Medical Director approval
Days Performed: Thursday
Times Performed: Batched (2x per week)
TAT: 2 - 7 days
Significance: Bordetella pertussis is a bacterium responsible for the clinical syndrome of pertussis or "whooping cough". B. pertussis is a strict human pathogen acquired through infected droplets of other hosts. Patients usually display typical URI symptoms during the first one to two weeks after infection, progressing into the characteristic illness of whooping cough lasting up to eight weeks or more. Patients and close contacts are treated with antibiotics in conjunction with measures to avoid exposures by susceptible individuals to infected persons. B. pertussis infections are reportable to public health authorities and require epidemiological investigation. PCR testing of nasopharyngeal specimens is the most sensitive method of organism detection and laboratory diagnostic procedure of choice.

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